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UK government invests to accelerate introduction of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies

A new £7.5 million (US$12.1 million) demonstrator programme in the UK will help to speed up the adoption of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies, and bring them into everyday use. The new funding was revealed today at a showcase demonstration of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies at City Hall in London.

The government-backed Technology Strategy Board programme will show how fuel cell systems and hydrogen technologies could be used in low-carbon energy and transport systems. The aim is to help businesses integrate these technologies with other energy and transport components, such as renewable energies or refueling infrastructure, to develop whole systems and show them working together.

The initiative will also strengthen the UK’s capability in the fuel cell and hydrogen energy sectors, support the development of strategic partnerships, and attract international businesses.

‘Hydrogen and fuel cell technologies are at the forefront of new energy solutions, which will dramatically cut emissions from transport, and the Coalition [government] is determined to support their development,’ says Greg Barker, Minister for Energy and Climate Change.

The showcase event highlighted how innovation in hydrogen and fuel cell technologies has advanced significantly as a result of an earlier £7 million (US$11.3 million) programme funded by the Department of Energy and Climate Change and delivered by the Technology Strategy Board.

The new competition for funding – Hydrogen and Fuel Cells: Whole System Integration and Demonstration – is planned to open in January 2012.

‘The new competition is designed to help business-led consortia develop innovative, large-scale, application-led projects that integrate hydrogen and fuel cell systems with key elements of our energy and transport systems and the wider built environment,’ says David Bott, TSB's Director of Innovation Programmes.

Bott continues: ‘Through this funding we hope to leverage further investment, strengthening the UK’s capability at a national level, and supporting the development of new strategic partnerships in the UK.’

Companies participating in the showcase event include ACAL Energy, Air Products, Arcola Theatre, Ceres Power, Diverse Energy, Intelligent Energy, ITM Power, Johnson Matthey Fuel Cells, and Ove Arup & Partners.

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